February 29th, 2024

city of liberal logoELLY GRIMM • Leader & Times


The Liberal City Commission will be taking on a full agenda for its next meeting Monday evening starting at 5:30. Monday’s meeting will be in the Blue Bonnet Community Building at 1109 W. 7th Street.

Up first for the commission will be discussion of a handful of items related to public water supply improvements. Discussion will start with Ordinance No. 4595 concerning authorizing a loan agreement with the Kansas Department of Health and Environment Public Water Supply Loan Fund for the costs associated with the project, and will also be discussing approval of a loan agreement with the  Kansas Department of Health and Environment Public Water Supply Loan Fund. Also included in this discussion will be Resolution No. 2394 concerning the authorization of a dedicated source of revenue for the repayment of a loan, as evidenced by the loan agreement between the KDHE and the City of Liberal, and the discussion will conclude with an engineering contract with Earles Engineering & Inspection.

Up next on the commission’s agenda will be discussion of Resolution No. 2393 concerning the Moderate Income Housing Grant. 

“OC Custom homes has proposed to build approximately 19 homes at $250,000 each, plus street costs. The proposed project cost is approximately $7.5 million,” the agenda information noted. “The application to Kansas Housing Resources is for up to $650,000 to offset home construction costs. Grant funds are pass-through funds, and the City of Liberal has no matching fund requirement for the project. A Rural Housing Incentive District application will be forthcoming. Staff recommends approval of Resolution No. 2393 authorizing the submittal of the 2023 grant application to Kansas Housing Resources Corporation.”

Also on the agenda is a request from the Liberal Police Department for the purchase of three 2020 Dodge Durango vehicles. 

“These vehicles will be used to replace vehicles that are currently on the line with nearly 100,000 miles on them,” the agenda information noted. “The majority of the equipment from the older vehicles can be transferred to the newer Durangos, and that includes the radios, MDTs, and radars. The price for each Durango is listed at $29,600, making the total price for all three at $88,800. The Liberal Police Department budgeted $90,000 for vehicles in the 2023 budget.”

The commission will then be asked to approve the appointment of Steve Merz to the Planning & Zoning Commission, and will then be discussing Ordinance No. 4593 concerning several amendments to zoning codes. To see the full list of amendments featured in the agenda, visit http://www.cityofliberal.org/AgendaCenter/ViewFile/Agenda/_01232023-514.

Also on the commission’s agenda will be discussion of upgrading lighting at McCray Park.

“Staff is requesting to purchase 15 40-watt solar lights with 20’ light poles for the McCray Park walking path,” the agenda information noted. “This project was brought to the staff last year by the Seward County Community College citizenship class, and all installations will be done by the Parks Department staff. Staff is requesting the commission accept a bid from Solar Illuminations for an amount not to exceed $30,000.”

Concluding the meeting’s new business will be discussion of an agreement for a runway lighting project at the Liberal Municipal Airport. 

“Liberal Municipal Airport is looking to upgrade the runway lighting/beacon and vault. We are wanting to move to LED lighting to try and help save money in the long run,” the agenda information noted. “The runway lights have been in operation since the early 2000s and are near the end of operational life, and staff is constantly having to change light bulbs. Staff is also going to either upgrade just the beacon itself or the whole tower, there are still discussions ongoing how to pursue that work. We also want to upgrade the vault where the regulators are for all the lighting on the airport by possibly putting an actual building around them to protect them from the elements. The agreement with Lochner is for design and construction of the entire project. The total project costs are not final at this time and will be included in another agreement. Staff is requesting commission consideration of the agreement, and letting the Mayor, Liberal City Manager and Liberal Airport Manager sign all related documents to this agreement.”